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McLaren looking forward to a 19-race calendar
Although the 2010 season's calendar has yet to be fully confirmed, the McLaren team's Managing Director, Jonathan Neale, is looking forward to the prospect of a 19-race championship. The last time Formula One visited that many venues dates back to the 2005 season.

Neale explained
on Tuesday that the extension of the calendar is the result of discussions between the teams, Bernie Ecclestone-led Formula One Management and the sport's governing body.

"The Team Principals have been talking with FOM and with the FIA and over the last few years have come to an understanding that operating upwards of 17 and less than about 20 is something that we can handle within the resources that we have," Neale told ESPN's Racing-Live.

However, planning 19 races within a period spanning from March 14th to November 7th can result in logistical puzzles.

"The sequencing of the races is very important and there are some questions still to sort out with FOM and the FIA," Neale said. "One of the challenges is that Monaco and Turkey currently in the draft schedule appear back-to-back, with a one-week separation. That's a phenomenal logistics challenge.

"We want to do both events and it's important that we do them well, but we just need to bear in mind that physically uprooting all of the infrastructure out of Monaco and moving across to Turkey is not a trivial issue, so we've got some questions around that."

Another factor involves the matter of money: with the possibility of two additional races next year, teams will have to spend more in regards to transportation and lodging for example. And of course, a longer championship means a lengthened development period for car upgrades.



McLaren's Managing Director believes that part of the equation has been worked out in a positive manner.

"We're excited about doing 19 races," he said. "Bottom line is that going racing does cost us money, but under the new arrangements that we have with FOM there is a mechanism by which we get recompense for that."

In addition to this year's venues, the provisional 2010 calendar opens the window for a Canadian Grand Prix revival and includes a maiden Formula One foray in South Korea.

"I think the calendar itself looks really exciting there are some really tantalising prospects on that race calendar. There are some traditional favourites that we all love and some new ones that will prove exciting that we don't know anything about at the moment," Neale pointed out.

"From the human point of view, it is gruelling for the mechanics," he acknowledged. "But we are looking to try and give people a break. Currently the calendar will provide to give the race teams a break in the first part of August.

"I don't see any major problems with that to be honest," Neale added. "I'm more excited by the prospects of a good calendar."

Jonathan Neale was speaking to ESPN's Racing-Live as part of the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes pre-race phone-in.



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